The model Work Health and Safety Regulations introduced new requirements for audiometric testing which commenced on from 1 January 2024. The relevant provisions are mirrored in all jurisdictions, except for Western Australia and Queensland, which have not adopted the relevant testing requirements as included in the Model Work Health and Safety Regulations.
The new requirement means employers must provide audiometric testing for workers who are frequently required to use personal protective equipment to protect themselves from the risk of hearing loss associated with noise that exceeds the exposure standard for noise.
Employers who provide personal protective equipment as a control measure must provide audiometric testing for the worker:
- within 3 months of the worker commencing the work; and
- in any event, at least every 2 years.
Failure to provide this testing exposes employers of fines of up to $37,500.
Employers should ensure that in addition to providing personal protective equipment to employees, that they are also regularly checking the effectiveness of this equipment through hearing tests to these employees. Employers should also note the timeline requirements relate to the employee commencing the work that requires the use of protective equipment, not the start of their employment.
Griffin Legal can assist organisations implement policies, procedures and training as well as undertake risk reviews to ensure compliance with work health and safety obligations.